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Carolina Panthers To Be 'Aggressive' In Free Agency, But Does That Really Mean Anything?

The Carolina Panthers are pretty cheap. Not quite Tampa Bay Buccaneers cheap, but satisfyingly cheap nevertheless. So when Jerry Richardson says the team is going to be "aggressive ... and wide open" once free agency begins, Panthers fans get a little excited. But is he talking about going after Nnamdi Asomugha, or is he just talking about sliding around some math?

As Pat Yasinkas theorizes, teams like the Panthers and Bucs may heavily front-load contracts in order to get close enough to the salary cap as dictated under the new collective bargaining agreement. Remember, the new deal pretty much forbids teams from being cheap.

While Carolina won't be able to give Cam Newton a mega deal, since there will be a rookie wage scale this year, they could still re-sign Charles Johnson and DeAngelo Williams to contracts that would pay them a large portion of their money right away. They could also lock up other young players like Jon Beason or Jordan Gross beyond their current deals by paying big now.

Hopefully they do something really dumb!

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.